Many aged care facilities have stopped residents leaving the premises. Many have reduced visits to one person per day, for one hour a day, and many have closed their doors entirely to outside visitors, including family, and this is causing distress for many aged folk.
The situation is particularly distressing for those in advanced stages of Alzheimer’s or dementia who may not understand what the COVID-19 crisis is.
In response to the coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak, Dementia Australia has released four Help Sheets outlining tips for people living with dementia, carers, families and friends of people living with dementia, residential care providers and home care providers.
Dementia Australia CEO Maree McCabe said people living with dementia are one of the most vulnerable groups in society at this time.
‘There is confusion in the community and new rules announced daily to keep pace with this rapidly evolving situation,’ said Ms McCabe.
‘For people living with dementia this can create even more uncertainty.
‘We have developed these Help Sheets to provide clarity on what people can do to achieve the best possible outcomes for people living with dementia.
‘The needs and capacity of people living with dementia must be a priority in response to the coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak.’
The help sheets are available now and include:
• Tips for people living with dementia – outlines the coronavirus COVID-19 symptoms, hygiene tips, the importance of having a good support network, ideas to remain active and engaged while in self-isolation, and where to go for help.
• Tips for carers, families and friends of people living with dementia – outlines the coronavirus COVID-19 symptoms, hygiene tips, helpful tips for primary carers, as well as for family, friends or neighbours, ideas for remaining active and engaged while in self-isolation, and where to go for help.
• Tips for residential care providers – outlines the impacts coronavirus COVID-19 may have on residents, tips on alternative activities and how to support continued engagement with families and carers.
• Tips for home care providers – outlines the impacts coronavirus COVID-19 may have on a person living with dementia, tips to reduce heightened anxiety and where to go for help.
‘We are here to support people living with dementia, their family, carers and friends, and anyone in the health and aged care industries,’ said Ms McCabe.
‘It is important for them to know they are not alone, especially during this unprecedented time.’
If you have any further questions, please call the National Dementia Helpline 1800 100 500 for information and support.
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